Has the American “death penalty debate” gotten locked up in political stalemate, as asked by a recent Reuters news article? Certainly the Supreme Court’s several stays of execution the past two weeks have had interesting, if not expected effects, even though its eventual decision won’t answer broader death penalty questions.
37 of the 38 states having the death penalty use lethal injection as their method of execution, including Ohio and Indiana. In Kentucky, electrocution remains an option for those sentenced before June 1998.
There are eight executions pending in the month of February, including Glenn Benner here in Ohio on Tuesday. Benner was convicted in 1986 in Summit County for the murder & rape of two women, along with another rape and an assault. His appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court was turned down last March, and according to a Beacon Journal article Benner wasn’t going to ask for clemency.
While the American Bar Association neither supports nor opposes the death penalty, it start its “Death Penalty Moratorium Implementation Project” in 2001, collecting and monitoring material on death penalty issues. As part of that project, a study of Georgia’s handling of death penalty cases recently revealed need for improvement, stating that since the state “ensure fairness & accuracy in every capital case, it should implement a moratorium on executions and death penalty prosecutions” until those issues can be addressed, according to a Law.com article earlier this week.